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#416015 - 05/31/17 02:28 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Mastering with 1 Button
David Snyder Online   happy
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Registered: 08/29/14
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Lurssen Mastering Console, standlone and VST. It really is what they say it is. Phenomenal. 5 hours left to get this (worth every single stinking penny) plus 2 other comparably priced modules, like Stealth Limiter (killer) and the White Channel (also killer).

For my next song I will post something I mastered with this, it really does make it iTunes spec-ed and ready with one button if you choose the presets which are simply amazing. (As long as your mix is good.)

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#442508 - 12/04/17 05:16 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: David Snyder]
BlueAttitude Offline
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Registered: 11/30/07
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Loc: Ontario, Canada
David,

I downloaded the demo of this yesterday and have been playing with it for a few hours now. First of all I think it sounds great! I am liking the results better than Ozone.
Quick question if you don't mind, do you have a recommendation on what the peak audio levels should be on the file you are sending to LMC for processing?
I've been experimenting with feeding it a file that peaks around -6db in the loudest parts and then adjusting the drive knob so it only goes in the red during those really loud portions, so it usually ends up being set around +1 db or so.
Do you have a similar work flow or can you recommend a different approach?

Thanks, man!

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#442512 - 12/04/17 05:38 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: David Snyder]
Guitarhacker Offline
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comments redacted.... for now.

(muttering to myself.....)
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#442521 - 12/04/17 06:21 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: Guitarhacker]
BlueAttitude Offline
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Originally Posted By: Guitarhacker
comments redacted.... for now.

(muttering to myself.....)



Then why bother posting in the first place??

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#442565 - 12/04/17 09:54 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: BlueAttitude]
Guitarhacker Offline
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Originally Posted By: BlueAttitude
Originally Posted By: Guitarhacker
comments redacted.... for now.

(muttering to myself.....)



Then why bother posting in the first place??


well.... since you insisted...

I'm a big fan of using presets to get you started, but I rarely keep the preset settings. One button or one preset or even one hundred presets just doesn't get the job done in many cases.

Oh yeah, for many, this is the Holy Grail discovered in the music world, because of one reason or another. Depending on your POV, one button may be perfectly fine but to another person, maybe not.

I've advocated in the past that anyone serious about mixing music should take the time to learn what the various aspects of mastering involve. Take the time to learn about compressors and why you need one and what settings you need to use and what's happening when you adjust the threshold or the release. Learn about the EQ and how to properly apply that as well as reverb. And learn the difference between the limiter and the compressor so they can be properly applied. Many folks who use these "one button" solutions, I would wager to say, don't take the time to study and understand those things. Instead, they pop in the preset, say to themselves that it sounds better than their original tracks and leave it at that, calling it done. And like I said, if that's how you feel and how you work, hey, all the best wishes in the world for your continued success.

It's when you take the time to dig into the depths of the plugs and learn what's going on under the hood, that you gain a huge step forward in in your mastering and mixing skills.
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#442620 - 12/04/17 12:43 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: David Snyder]
BlueAttitude Offline
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Registered: 11/30/07
Posts: 986
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Despite what you may think I have a very good understanding of the mastering process, and how limiters, compressors, and EQ work. I've had a home studio for almost 20 years and back in the day those were the tools you needed to master a track.

Hey, if you want to use an old school mastering chain more power to you! For me I prefer tools such as Ozone, and possibly this one, I'm still evaluating it, that get me close to a finished product with a minimum amount of work.

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#442644 - 12/04/17 03:45 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: BlueAttitude]
Janice & Bud Offline
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Originally Posted By: BlueAttitude
Despite what you may think I have a very good understanding of the mastering process, and how limiters, compressors, and EQ work. I've had a home studio for almost 20 years and back in the day those were the tools you needed to master a track.

Hey, if you want to use an old school mastering chain more power to you! For me I prefer tools such as Ozone, and possibly this one, I'm still evaluating it, that get me close to a finished product with a minimum amount of work.


A listen to your posted productions will quickly verify that you do, indeed, have “a very good understanding of the mastering process.”

IMO there are no absolutes in the arcane world of mastering - one either “likes” the result or not. I think the movement toward more and more sophisticated software (and accompanying sophisticated presets) is simply reflective of burgeoning AI technology. I particularly like the Ozone presets for which I can listen to multiple permutations and choose one to my liking - with occasional light tweaking. If I’m the project producer and I like the result all is good in my book. Heck, “old school” mastering has plenty of presets - written in notebooks! My first studio experience was in 1966. I’m all about the changes that have occurred since then. From what I’ve read we are on the cusp of a tech explosion regarding mixing and mastering. I’m in smile
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#442676 - 12/04/17 07:08 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: Janice & Bud]
Jim Fogle Offline
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I envy those of you like Herb and Bud that have the background experience or knowledge to HAVE trained ears and mixing skills. Many, do not. I confess I am one of the unskilled.

Of course Herb is correct. Bud's correct too. In the beginning a user may need to depend on presets 100% to create audio that can be listened to without cringing. There is a reason Toontrack can sell EZ Mix bundles and everyone loves Ozone. The truth is not everyone has the skills to create a listenable mix or the knowledge to put together a proper signal chain.

Ideally people will use these as educational tools and learn while also helping them to be able to create audio they can be proud of while they are learning.
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#442684 - 12/04/17 09:52 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: David Snyder]
JohnJohnJohn Offline
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I remember my first TI-55 that helped me through my engineering classes.



Now I could have insisted on doing everything long-hand with my slide rule but I realized early on that you use the best tools available at the time to get the job done.

So, yes, of course I use Ozone! And if I happen to like a preset with or without a little tweaking then I am just that much further along in the process. And I honestly don't care if I miss a learning experience by using a preset rather than handcrafting my mastering chain! Same way I don't care one whit about how to construct a reverb chamber...I just click a button to add the reverb! laugh

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#442714 - 12/05/17 04:19 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: JohnJohnJohn]
BlueAttitude Offline
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Registered: 11/30/07
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Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: JohnJohnJohn


Now I could have insisted on doing everything long-hand with my slide rule but I realized early on that you use the best tools available at the time to get the job done.

So, yes, of course I use Ozone! And if I happen to like a preset with or without a little tweaking then I am just that much further along in the process. And I honestly don't care if I miss a learning experience by using a preset rather than handcrafting my mastering chain! Same way I don't care one whit about how to construct a reverb chamber...I just click a button to add the reverb! laugh


When I first started in technical school back in '73 we still used slide rules, calculators were still a couple of years away.
And when I first started working in the computer industry it was large main frame computers so big that you could walk inside, with not even close to the power of a modern phone.
Technology is a wonderful thing, the things you can accomplish with a small home studio today is really quite remarkable. And getting better all the time!

As Bud said:
"I’m all about the changes that have occurred since then. From what I’ve read we are on the cusp of a tech explosion regarding mixing and mastering. I’m in"

Me too!


Edited by BlueAttitude (12/05/17 04:22 AM)

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#442716 - 12/05/17 04:28 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: Jim Fogle]
Janice & Bud Offline
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Posts: 5068
Loc: GA USA
Originally Posted By: Jim Fogle
I envy those of you like Herb and Bud that have the background experience or knowledge to HAVE trained ears and mixing skills. Many, do not. I confess I am one of the unskilled.

Of course Herb is correct. Bud's correct too. In the beginning a user may need to depend on presets 100% to create audio that can be listened to without cringing. There is a reason Toontrack can sell EZ Mix bundles and everyone loves Ozone. The truth is not everyone has the skills to create a listenable mix or the knowledge to put together a proper signal chain.

Ideally people will use these as educational tools and learn while also helping them to be able to create audio they can be proud of while they are learning.


Jim, i understand and appreciate your perspective. I’m suggesting that the time is coming or is perhaps here that it will simply not be necessary to learn those skills yet still create a great master. There will always be luddites and/or folks who simply want to master/mix sans latest technology. I make no value judgement on that other than I suspect they will become a dwindling number.

Bud

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#442735 - 12/05/17 07:10 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: David Snyder]
David Snyder Online   happy
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Hmmm. This may be getting overly complicated from my perspective, and of course that is only one perspective.

I separate mixing from "mastering." I spend countless hours with tons of plug ins and EQs in the mixing phase and get it as close as I can. I usually have nothing in the master bus when the mix is exported.

When that is done, I move to either Ozone or Lurssen for the final gloss. (Sometimes both.)

Ozone will let you pick a preset and do infinite tweaks of that preset as a starting point. It also lets you bring in 3rd party plugins. So for example, I may start with "enhance stereo image" from Ozone, but also bring in a bus compressor from IK Multimedia to add more glue. Or I may also bring in another EQ. Who knows. It depends on the sound.

For some final "finishing touches" I just let Lurssen do its thing after I have done all I can do in the mix. For many of these tunes it works well, when I want the loudness, pop, sparkle and compression that you hear in many modern mixes.

But it is not in the mixing--only the very last thing I do to get a certain sheen, pop and crispness to the final version. I call this the "master."

If I think Lurssen has done too much I will abandon it and start setting up a signal chain in Ozone, but most of the time I find Lurssen to work quite well as the final brush stroke.

I do not use it on softer, mostly acoustic singer-songwriting songs though, because it takes too much away from the dynamic range.

But that is only me. Just one guy, one approach, and one method to working with sounds.

There are thousands more. Everyone has to produce what they are satisfied with.

On my last song, I laughed, because from various forums and other sources, I got about 24 different suggestions on how and why I needed to completely redo the mix, or add or subtract instruments, or add reverb, or delete reverb, you name it. Every single suggestion was different from the other--sometimes at polar opposites.

Maybe we should all just start sending out .wav files batches and say "Here, mix your own version until you are happy. After all, it is your song."

smile
_________________________
David Snyder
Audiophile Everything + Studio + Instruments + Fingers
ASCAP, NSAI
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https://soundcloud.com/davidsnyderchannel
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#442741 - 12/05/17 07:55 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: David Snyder]
Guitarhacker Offline
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Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 5295
Indeed, when you have mixed the project well, there's almost no work left for the mastering stage. As David said.... just a little bit of gloss is all that's needed. I refer to it as "polishing the mix".

And yes, I love and use Ozone. I have a number of my custom presets that I have created for various reasons along the way. But the funny thing is, I can record two songs, basically the same genre and style, and pop in the same preset, and the preset requires almost no tweeking in one song but requires a substantial amount of tweeking or even deleting it and starting over, in the other song. Many years back, and you probably do the same thing, I began to use presets as simply a good starting point.
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#442821 - 12/05/17 11:52 AM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: David Snyder]
Jim Fogle Offline
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Actually, I believe we are all saying pretty much the same thing just from different perspectives. All is good.
_________________________
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#442919 - 12/05/17 08:59 PM [Recording, Mixing, Performance and Production] Re: Mastering with 1 Button [Re: David Snyder]
rockstar_not Offline
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I use the Acuma Final Mix plugin which has the following signal chain: 6 band parametric eq—>3 Band compression—> 6 Band parametric eq—> limiter.

Lots of overall bus presets as well as for sub mixes and individual channels.

I’ve learned a great deal surfing the presets and switching off and on and so forth. Not to brag, but I have a Masters degree in engineering with masters level signal processing courses. In other words, as part of that course work I’ve designed filters, dynamic processing, etc.

All of that deep training in how signals are processed is very useful in picturing what is happening to the signal, but I would say the preset auditioning is just as educational and perhaps more so.

I use Final Mix less, using more channel strip plugin tweaked presets on individual channels but even with those, auditioning and experimenting with presets has been a boon.

For those of us that didn’t have any opportunity to learn in a studio, I’m not sure there’s a better way to learn these days.

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